After a tough loss in Oklahoma, the Clippers are looking for a morale-boosting win against New Orleans on Saturday.
Despite the loss there were signs of hope for the Clippers, in the middle of a 4 game losing streak.
Clippers’ two rookie guards, Juwan Evans and Sindarius Thornwell, look to have their second game in a row with some meaningful minutes. Friday night, Evans only put up 3 points, 1 rebound, and 1 steal. Despite having an unimpressive stat line, the young point guard put in hustle. Evans’ off-the-ball work left him with a +/- of 20. Thornwell shot 80% from the field and recorded 2 blocks against the Thunder. Look for another high energy game from these two against the Pels as they will continue to get minutes with the absence of Patrick Beverley and Milos Teodosic.
It goes for every game this season, but The Clippers need MVP performances from Blake, the now undisputed leader of the Clippers. He’s been building a resume of posters this season and will be looking to add to his collection. Griffin and Jordan will have their work cut out for them tonight on both sides of the court. Having to guard and score on New Orleans’ twin towers Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins will not be easy.
DJ struggled against the Thunder on Friday, looking uninterested and lacking effort on both ends of the court. Jordan won’t be able to repeat another performance like that tonight with two of leagues best bigs on the floor. The Clippers need to get DJ going early with some lobs to keep him engaged and interested in the game.
The Clippers bench had an amazing night on Friday, showcased by Lou Williams’ season high 35 points, 7 rebounds, and 3 assists. But he hasn’t been the only contributor; center Willie Reed has been great coming off the pine for the Clippers, almost getting a double-double against OKC. Sam Dekker and Montrezl Harrell are expected to get some playing time again as the team is still dealing with injuries.
The Clippers are getting a little bit of a break with Tony Allen listed as OUT for the Pelicans. Allen, a three-time NBA All-Defensive First Team wing, has been a contributor off the bench for New Orleans.
On the second game of a back-to-back, the Clippers will have to stay focused to get the win and snap a four game skid. Tonight will be about energy, effort, and teamwork. Hopefully, the Clippers are ready for the challenge and right the ship.